National Star welcome government’s disability benefit system announcement

National Star has welcomed the government’s announcement to overhaul the disability benefit system.

By Matt Walsh · 30/04/2024

National Star has welcomed the government’s announcement to overhaul the disability benefit system.

A 12-week consultation has been launched with the objective to reform the Personal Independence Payment (PIP) and move away from fixed cash benefits towards more tailored support.

‘The system needs an overhaul to make it more fit for purpose. We are concerned that this is really a cost-cutting exercise rather than a review that would improve the quality of life for young people with complex needs,’ said Lynette Barrett, Chief Executive Officer at National Star.

National Star welcomes the news that one of the reforms would be to stop reoccurring assessments for PIP.

‘The young people we work with have complex disabilities and needs that will stay with them all their lives, yet, under the current system, they are continuously assessed as if they will somehow recover,’ says Mrs Barrett.

‘We would welcome any review that would see the removal of these re-assessments which can be stressful for the young person. The government needs to be mindful that while those with complex needs will not miraculously recover, it is possible their condition could deteriorate as they age. The benefits system needs to flexible enough to deal with these changes in a timely and compassionate manner.’

National Star will support the young people it works with to take part in the 12-week consultation.

‘These changes will impact on the young people who attend National Star College and those young adults who live with us permanently in our long-term accommodation. National Star is passionate about learner voice and we will be supporting and encouraging young people and their families to take part in this consultation,’ says Mrs Barrett.

‘They are the ones who know first-hand how any changes will affect their lives and their voices are the most important in this process.’

To take part in the consultation, visit this link.

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